Any successful project is due to the hard work and cooperation of a team of individuals. But as any experienced project manager knows, it’s not just about assembling the right team and delegating tasks. You also need to carefully manage relationships with stakeholders. In order to do that, you need to perform a stakeholder analysis. In this article, we’ll discuss what a stakeholder analysis is, how to go about performing one, and the benefits of doing so.
Why should you do a stakeholder analysis?
There are a few key reasons why you should do a stakeholder analysis in your next project. First and foremost, it’s a great way to identify and prioritize your project’s stakeholders. It can also help you understand their interests, motivations, and how they might be able to help or hinder your project. Additionally, stakeholder analysis can help you build better relationships with your stakeholders by understanding their needs and concerns. Last but not least, performing a stakeholder analysis will give you a better understanding of the power dynamics within your project.
What is stakeholder analysis?
A stakeholder analysis is a process of understanding who the stakeholders are in a given project, what their interests are, and what level of engagement each stakeholder should have. It’s important to perform a stakeholder analysis early in a project, as it will help define the scope and parameters of the project. The goal of a stakeholder analysis is to create a matrix that maps out all stakeholders, their interests, and how best to engage them.
The benefits of a stakeholder analysis
A stakeholder analysis is a process that helps you identify and assess the stakeholders in your project. By understanding who your stakeholders are and what their interests are, you can better manage their expectations and ensure that everyone is on the same page. The benefits of undertaking a stakeholder analysis include:
- Improved communication and coordination among stakeholders
- Avoidance of misunderstandings and conflict
- Strengthened relationships with key stakeholders
- Better decision-making due to a clear understanding of all stakeholders’ positions
When it is necessary to do a stakeholder analysis
A stakeholder analysis is necessary when you want to identify and understand the interests, attitudes, and intentions of people who may affect or be affected by a project. It’s helpful to do a stakeholder analysis early on in your project planning so that you can account for potential risks and opportunities. You’ll want to consider all stakeholders, from internal team members to outside partners and even the public. You’ll also need to determine which stakeholders are critical to the success of your project and which ones can be disregarded. By conducting a thorough stakeholder analysis, you can make better decisions and avoid any potential problems down the road.
Stakeholder analysis questions
A stakeholder analysis is a key part of understanding and managing relationships with individuals or groups who may affect, be affected by or perceive themselves to be affected by a proposed action or decision. When conducting a stakeholder analysis, it’s important to ask the following questions:
⦁ Who are the stakeholders?
⦁ What are their interests?
⦁ What are their concerns?
⦁ What is the power and influence of each stakeholder?
⦁ What is the relationship of each stakeholder to the organization?
⦁ What are past experiences with and perceptions of the organization?
Answering these questions will help you understand the dynamics at play and better manage potential conflicts. As you can see, there’s a lot to consider when it comes to stakeholder analysis. But by taking the time to do it right, you’ll set your business up for success
How to create a stakeholder analysis
The first step in creating a professional stakeholder analysis is to assemble your team. This includes the project manager, as well as any other stakeholders who will be involved in the project. Once your team is assembled, it’s time to start identifying stakeholders. The best way to do this is by developing a stakeholder matrix. This matrix will help you identify the stakeholders’ power and interest in the project. You’ll also want to determine how to communicate with each stakeholder. Finally, you’ll need to create a plan for managing stakeholder expectations.
|Stakeholders||Mandate||Role of stakeholders||Marginalized||Key stakeholders|
Three basic steps of stakeholder analysis
There are three most basic steps of stakeholder analysis.
⦁ Stakeholder Identification
Your stakeholders may include your family, teammates, coworkers, investors, and advisors. Always make a list before starting a stakeholder analysis in any project.
⦁ Prioritizing your stakeholders
After preparing the list of all stakeholders, prioritize them on the basis of their interest in the project, and deal with these people according to their positions. There are usually four groups of people
⦁ Highly interested, high power
⦁ Highly interested, low power
⦁ Less interested, high power
⦁ Less interested, low power
Before choosing your key stakeholders from the identified people, you should always ask the following questions.
⦁ What motivates them most about your project?
⦁ What opinion they are putting forward about your project?
⦁ What is their financial and emotional support towards your project?
⦁ If they don’t want to support your project, what argument would you make to win their trust in your project?
⦁ If you are unable to win their support, how can you manage their opposition?
Lessons learned from stakeholder analysis of a project
The flourishing scope of many projects needs collaborations with many stakeholders participating in the projects. The success of any project lies in the commitment and transparency of that project. Project managers have learned a lot of lessons in stakeholder collaborations. Some of these are given below
⦁ The ambitions and goals of any project should be known before engaging the stakeholders.
⦁ Measurement of the nature of the project is as important as the outcome of that project.
⦁ Project sustainability always lies in the transparency of the project.
⦁ While making policies and project design, all stakeholders must know the details of project design and policies.
⦁ Dominance shown by any stakeholder over others may ruin the project results.
Stakeholder analysis is an essential part of any project. By understanding the stakeholders and their interests, you can better manage their expectations and ensure the project is a success. By taking the time to do a proper stakeholder analysis, you can avoid unnecessary conflict and ensure everyone involved in the project is on the same page.